Heritage Days: Mansion of the Governor and temporary exhibition "COSTUMIZED" (fully booked)
The Governor’s mansion is the only surviving portion of a vast complex designed for the National Bank of Belgium by architects Hendrik Beyaert and Wynand Janssens and constructed between 1860 and 1878. As its name suggests, the mansion was the residence of the governor of this prestigious institution. Fittingly, its monumental façade is bedecked with splendid decor in the eclectic style. The Louis XVI elements favoured by the Second Empire style have been skilfully combined with features drawn from the Italian and French Renaissance styles to remarkable effect. The building’s facing is crafted from Euville, Gobertange, Savonnière and Audun stone, while the majestic bays of the piano nobile, which is supported by a ground floor featuring banded rustication, are embellished with ornate sculpted details. The decor inside the mansion is every bit as sumptuous, as evidenced by the impressive suite of state rooms. While the studies are adorned with panelling and richly ornamented coffered ceilings, the rooms serving for relaxation and entertaining have elegant white-and-gold decor. The Ballroom is ornamented further by Joseph Stallaert’s paintings of mythological scenes, the Red Room by cherry-red silk wall coverings, and the Aubusson Room by richly upholstered furniture. The building’s rare marbles, precious wood and gilded stucco made it a magnificent setting for the National Bank’s receptions.
Guided tours, Sat. & Sun. at 10:00, 11:00, 12:00, 13:00, 14:00, 15:00 and 16:00 (French), 10:30, 11:30, 12:30, 13:30, 14:30, 15:30 and 16:30 (Dutch).
Exhibition: COSTUMIZED – A fresh look at NBB ushers’ uniforms by the La Cambre fashion design studio. When the mansion of the governor of the National Bank of Belgium was being renovated, the old ushers’ uniforms found there were donated to the fashion design studio of the La Cambre design school. A selection of creations by the school’s fashion design students will be displayed in situ in the mansion’s historic rooms.